I'm convinced we (as in, writers) all have a masochistic side to us. How else do we explain our tendency to kick ourselves in the butt when we're already feeling down? Sure, some of the pain and heartache we experience is out of our control--rejections, harsh critiques, rejections, rejections, bad reviews, rejections. However, sometimes we bring it on all by ourselves.
Yesterday was a bad day. It was one of those days where, for reasons unknown, I woke up in a nasty funk. I tried to get myself out of it--I wrote, cooked, cleaned, took the dog for a walk--but nothing I did could alleviate this doom and gloom feeling inside. Then, I got an email that put me in an even worse mood, and like a pig in mud, I spent the rest of the day wallowing in self-pity. All those negative thoughts that usually drift in and out of writers heads got stuck in mine like a thumbtack on a cork board. And as if that wasn't enough, I started playing the "statistics" game. Oh, yes. You know what I'm talking about. I went to google and immediately started typing in things like: What percentage of writers never get published? How many book deals does publisher "X" make a year? What percentage of writers become alcoholics? Okay, just kidding on the last one, but you see what I'm saying.
That was yesterday.
Today, I woke up in a better mood (thank GOD!), put my big-girl pan--, er . . . underwear on, and thought, screw the statistics! The way I look at it, I'm already ahead of the game. According to my statistical binge last night, only about 3% of people who start a novel actually finish it, and I've written two (almost three!). Not only have I written [almost] three novels, but I landed an agent. So, take THAT statistics (by the way, I hated my statistics class in college). Score: Me--2 Statistics--0.
The lesson in all of this?
1) Don't drink and google
2) Statistics is a science; writing is an art. The two don't go together.
3) Beat the odds